Friday, March 11, 2011

Walk like an Egyptian: Mubarak and other dictators.

Perhaps Mubarak should have consulted Playboy's Hafner on how to continue running an empire and keep everybody happy as well. Now the end result is that Mubarak got booted out seemingly by the Egyptian people but perhaps by his own army of rogues. Reuter's news reported that Mubarak had a death wish. At eighty and beyond, minus the throne, this would be a legitimate wish. With billions stashed away, even death would be sweet, something  Mubarak denied his own people, most of whom suffered terribly throughout his 30 years of dictatorship. Not that dictatorships or suffering masses are unusual in that part of the world, the question for the latter being whether that is stoicism or apathy as usual. 

Obama forgot America's support of Mubarak and encouraged the Egyptians - who unaware of O's leanings, cursed America anyway and for good measure threw in some threats for Israel as well. The Saudi king perhaps livid with Obama's support had a few things to say to him. Perhaps the king saw a similar fate in the ugly demise of Mubarak. Then as quickly as his pristine white robes would allow, congratulated the Egyptian people on taking to the streets! Immediately after that he got his own army and religious police to crack down on any stirrings of protest in his kingdom. He's also planning to step up funds for more universities in America, print more hate and propaganda literature, build more houses of worship around the world especially in Pakistan which seems to be the pet breeding ground for practices in terrorism.

A little distance away, Iran's Ahmadinejad declares from the ramparts how wonderful it is to see the events in Egypt. Now Iran could send in its ships of rockets and bombs and other deadly stuff to support the Brotherhood and Hezbollah and of course push Israel in the Red Sea. Simultaneously, Ahmadinejad also gets Iran's dreaded police to speedily prepare to beat and kill its protestors just like a few months ago. The world which is ever ready for any action around the globe is left scratching its head as to who or what to call. It's business as usual in the middle east where talk from both sides of the mouth is routinely carried out. Not a good foundation for a free society. 

At any given time and in any land, women are more or less 50% of the population which means by taking them out, the world loses 50% of its efforts at progress and ingenuity. This simple concept is willfully ignored and abandoned in the name of religion. Women's rights and equality; freedom of thought, writing, and speech; focus on learning in the arts and sciences; spirit of innovation; love for life; personal responsibility, right to liberty and happiness - well these have been forgotten in the desert lands. And the ones who've dared to remember have ceremoniously disappeared. Nonetheless, awakenings however meager are good. As long as the process is not hijacked by radical thought, attempts for change are commendable. For the young and restless - it gives them something to do. After all, millions of them are impressionable, oppressed, fearful - just ripe for change from within. 

In a land of millions and growing, what are a few thousands protesting in the streets of Cairo? In the other places of the Middle East, thousands of other protestors too met up, screamed, and were quickly squashed by hundreds of thousands of various regimes' police force. The Egyptians escaped the wrath of the army because Mubarak was too old for them too. Perhaps he had lost some of the ruthlessness, the kind that armies like. The apparatus of capture and torture is well enconsed in these lands. Why would the concept of democracy suddenly take root in the Muslim lands? It will not happen simply because this is an alien concept not in tune with their political, religious, social systems. Whenever the people, women included, are ready ready for a genuine change and growth, the land will be ready as well. 


  1. RJaiya Venkat: Nothing new....Middle east has always had its own course with respect to politics, democracy, monarchy or dictatorship. Iraq in a mess today...thanks to whoever it is; Its better that they sort it out among themselves without any intervention & not to forget that US is a big *daddy* for all of them.
    February 18 at 10:04pm ·

  2. Iraq was a personal fiefdom of Saddam. After him at least Iraqis have been able to taste some sort of freedom and they're taking full advantage of it. There are too many factions who have their own power struggles and differences. Democracies are a messy business and take an extremely long time . Thanks for reading and commenting Yam.

  3. Vandana Shah:
    I was surprised not to see Obama send his troops here...but then maybe not. Birds of a feather, flock together. He sure has his own agenda!! Joyce you sure have the right perspective on the whole political and social situation here and around and have worded everything so eloquently, insightfullly and correctly.
    February 19 at 3:01pm

  4. Indrani Pushilal: I lived in Baghdad when Saddam was vice-president. Saw lot of midnight knock drama in my own neighbourhood a 10 year old....
    February 21 at 2:41am

  5. Chhabi Agarwal:
    I feel that the day is not far when a similar revolt will happen in India.. Stoic is my word for the Indians..we take everything heaped onto us..taxes, bad governance, indignities on the women, the politicisation of Religion, the abject poverty on one hand, extreme riches on the other, lack of basic amenities for the larger population, caste discrimination, and much much more..
    The Politician Businessman nexus have raped and plundered the country to the point, that some sort of explosion seems imminent..and however justified that may be, I still shudder to think of the aftermath, as the veneer of civility is getting thinner by the moment, and when it cracks, the ugly animal exposed beneath it may do anything.
    February 22 at 12:59am